skip to main content
introduction to trail and fell running
Trail Running

Introduction to Trail and Fell Running

ISBN 978-1-905444-40-3

Buy This Now

Please choose which format you would like to purchase this product in.


  • £1.40 per book to the UK.
  • £3.42 per book to Ireland and Europe.
  • £4.62 per book to the rest of the World.

About the Guide

80 page black and white A5 booklet giving an introduction to those new to trail running and fell running.

The booklet first explains what trail and fell running are and then details the differences between the two before going into physical aspects of this type of off-road running.

In the training section the constituent parts of these two activities, namely uphill running, downhill running, endurance running, speed training and running over different terrain are examined with also sections on strength training and appropriate flexibility sessions for the trail and fell runner. The section then concludes with advice on training sessions for the trail and fell runner and how to construct different types of sessions to maximise your training.

The relevant clothing and equipment for the two types of running are explained as is the reasons for it and why some aspects are made compulsory for all competitors in fell races. The booklet finally concludes with a section on what to expect when you compete in your first trail or fell race, about the registration, the facilities, what to expect when you are out on the course and what happens when the run is over.

Trail and fell running, collectively known as off-road running. As more and more runners leave the boredom of the roads and seek the challenges and pleasures of running in the open countryside, what can they expect to await them, how can they train and prepare for it and what knowledge, skill and equipment is required to ensure maximum enjoyment and safety.

This booklet takes the newcomer to this, the most rewarding and natural of all the athletics disciplines, and guides them through their baptism of off-road running.


  1. Introduction
  2. What is Trail and Fell Running
    Why run off-road
    Governing bodies
    Types of event
  3. Preparing for a Trail or Fell Run
    Choosing and entering an event
    Grading of routes
    Using the Grading System for progression of ability
    How many events should I do in a year
  4. Physical Aspects of Trail and Fell Running
    Running style
    Energy consumption
    Slow running and walking
    Load carrying
  5. Training for Trail and Fell Running
    General training principles
    Endurance work
    Uphill work
    Downhill work
    Terrain training
    Strength work
    Constructing a session
    Length of sessions
    Putting it all together
    Mental attitude
  6. Technical Aspects of Trail and Fell Running
    Rucksack or bumbag
    Water carrying
    Safety items
    Navigation aids
    Required kit for events
    Safety considerations
    Meeting animals
  7. Route Finding, Waymarking and Navigation
    Waymarking and marking of courses
    Navigation training
  8. Participating in a Trail or Fell Run
    The event
  9. Summary

The Walks

Customer Reviews

What do our customers think about this guide?

Scottish Hill Runners Association Newsletter September 2007

This is an excellent book which, whilst designed, as its title suggests, to guide the newcomer to the sport through the basics, will also appeal to the more experienced hill runner who wants to revisit the fundamentals of their chosen activity. It covers a range of off-road activities, from trail running through to hill races and mountain marathons. There are chapters on progressing from running off-road to racing, different types of training, technical aspects (including equipment, clothing, safety and navigation) and a final section which takes the runner through a typical race day.
The sub-text throughout is to encourage you to enjoy training off-road, at the same time as having the ambition and inspiration to improve fitness and progress with care to the challenge of racing further and faster. Author Kev Shevels is an experienced runner, coach and race organiser. The guide is the first in a series, with others looking in greater detail at specifics such as uphill and downhill techniques, long and ultra races, and mountain marathons.

Newsletter of the Welsh Fell Runner's Association April 2007

This booklet is very much aimed at the runner wishing to take up trail or fell running for the first time. In an easy to read style Kevin describes the different types of terrain you may expect to experience when participating in trail, fell and mountain running. He also, includes a brief summary of the nature of each of the different types of off-road events (eg. Fell, trail, long distance walking, mountain marathons and orienteering ) so that you can familiarize yourself with what to expect in each type of event. He goes on to consider the different running styles required for the various types of terrain; identifying the limbs and muscles used and the impact on these as a consequence of running off-road. The importance of stretching is emphasized giving examples with diagrams of some of the basic exercises which will need to be done. A more detailed analysis can be found in a sister booklet ‘Strength and Conditioning for Off-Road Runners’. Basic details of specific training, encompassing Endurance, Uphill, Downhill, Speed, Terrain and Strength work are described and an example of a four week training schedule is included as a general guide, together with diagrams of basic circuit training exercises.
The technical aspects such as types of footwear and clothing to be worn, kit requirements, survival bags, navigational aids and safety considerations
are covered in some depth. The importance of ensuring that you do not stray off course and lose your way is explained, as is the need for navigational skills in some races. However, for more detailed information on navigation and map reading see a sister publication ‘Navigation for Off-road Runners’.
This is a good comprehensive booklet, which should prove useful to anyone setting out on the wonderful and enjoyable journey of discovering off-road running.

The Fellrunner Magazine Spring 2007

"In seven sections, split into concise chapters, it guides the newcomer through all aspects of off-road running" "Advice on training and racing, the equipment needs of the runner, the terrain encountered and its demands on the body - its all covered." "Particularly useful are the sections on the physical aspects of and training required for trail and fell running. Not only will these sections prove useful to the newly converted road runner, but they can also be of use to those of use who have already discovered the magic of mud, rock and forest paths, but have not yet considered a structured approach to our improvement." "An Introduction to Trail and Fell Running does offer a really good overview - "just what it says on the tin" so to speak."

Newsletter of the Trail Runner's Association Spring 2007.

"While this book seems to me to be aimed at the beginner trail or fell runner it is also aimed at this beginner who wants to do well. The narrative is a mixture of basic advice and more specific training methods for those who have no real experience of running off-road." "So, a very useful book, aimed at a runner who wants to know how to progress into the trail running scene and how to train for it. Other books in the series, either already out, or in production, will take you further but, along with "Long and Ultra Distance Off-Road Running" a perfect compliment to those just wanting to get out there."

Newsletter Signup

Submit your email address to keep up to date with latest news & new releases.